15.92 x 16
25 February – 18 April, 2015
Parra & Romero is pleased to present the gallery’s second exhibition with Thomas Scheibitz (1968). Titled 15.92×16, the exhibition features a wide range of paintings, sculptures and drawings by the artist. The starting point of this new body of work is a short story by Samuel Beckett, The Lost Ones (Der Verwaiser).
In his works Thomas Scheibitz explores the boundary between the figural and the abstract. He employs themes and motifs from everyday, pop culture, but also art historian models, translating them into a personal pictorial language. Drawing from all this impressions, Scheibitz transposes what surrounds him into a new artistic idiom, thus arriving at the forms and structures of his paintings and sculptures.
Scheibitz’s artistic practice incorporates painting and sculpture as equals, breaking the hierarchical relationship between them. The key of his work is the investigation of the relationship of signifier and signified, and the shift from literal to figurative and back again, all of which occurs among the layers of paint or between planes of sculpture materials.
In this exhibition, Scheibitz presents paintings and sculptures that create associations with theatre and the role played by Samuel Becket in his usage of the stage as a means of creating a Gesamtkunstwerk independent from traditional media. Thus, the artist interprets the figure of the Irish writer as a visual artist. In this way, the geography described in The Lost Ones, a cylinder illuminated by a yellow, dim light, can be read as an artistic installation. However, Scheibitz’s works should not be strictly considered as an act of abstract translation. They have to be interpreted like the creation of a parallel world far away from direct inspiration. In words of Julian Heynen, Scheibitz’s compositions are “related to the act of seeing in the rest of the world, and yet incomparable, parallel to thought, and yet without a prototype.”
The paintings presented, though highly abstract, reveal familiar elements upon closer examination: buildings or landscapes simplified into bold and gestural shapes and colours. In these pieces he plays with familiar shapes and renders his works into patchworks of bright colour blocks and thick lines. While his paintings are structured in terms of line and composition, the patchy and streaky brushwork often lends the imprecision that strikes a “semi-emotional” resonance, sometimes agitated and other times unexpectedly soft.
The sculptures explore form, space, shape and colour, remembering the cylinder and the yellow light in a subtle wink to Beckett’s novel.
Thomas Scheibitz lives and works in Berlin. His works have been exhibited at institutions such as BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Newcastle, United Kingdom (2013); MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt am Main, Germany (2012); Collezione Maramotti, Reggio Emilia, Italy (2011); Camden Arts Centre, London, United Kingdom (2008); Musée d’ Art Moderne Luxembourg, Luxemburg (2008). His work belongs to several public collections such as Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin; Kunstmuseum, Winthertur; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Centre d’Arte de Contemporain, Genéve; Tate Modern, London and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco.